Wednesday, March 31, 2010

National Poetry Month

Today marks the end of National Reading Month but tomorrow, we celebrate Poetry. Inaugurated by the Academy of American Poets in 1996, National Poetry Month is now celebrated every April of every year. Let's spread the word, celebrate and show our appreciation for the richness and creativeness of poetry. Here's a great way to start. Sign up to receive one poem a day via e-mail throughout the month by visiting Happy Reading!!

Phenomenal Woman

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I'm not cute or built to suit a fashion model's size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I'm telling lies.
I say,
It's in the reach of my arms
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It's the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can't touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them
They say they still can't see.
I say,
It's in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I'm a woman

Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

Now you understand
Just why my head's not bowed.
I don't shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It's in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
The need of my care,
'Cause I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

~Maya Angelou

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

What diffference do it make?

It's not often you read a book that leaves you thinking of its' message for months after you've read it. In fact, the inspiration I got from 'Same Kind of Different As Me' and 'What difference do it make?' will last a lifetime. That's why, in celebration of National Reading Month, I've passed these books on to my friends, hoping (knowing) they will gain the same positive experience. Trust me; these books will forever change you.

Like 'Same Kind of Different As Me', this book is full of determination, hope and inspiration; you will never feel the same about homelessness. Ron Hall and Denver Moore continue their quest to truly make a difference and help people in need. They give the reader updates on their lives and tell more stories about their past. It was particularly enjoyable to hear more about Ron Hall's life outside of his marriage to Deborah; specifically, his relationship with his alcoholic father. What a powerful lesson on forgiveness and acceptance!

And how brilliant was it to add testimonies from readers who were inspired by the first book? Hearing their stories made you realize how much your actions can impact other people's lives. Generally, that's not something we really think about. Sometimes the simplest things can change a person's whole outlook on life. Denver makes you see just how important your actions are. His words will literally make your heart heavy. You'll ask yourself like I did, "Am I doing everything I can to make a difference?"

Others say you don't have to read the first book to enjoy this one. That may be true, but I highly recommend you read 'Same Kind of Different As Me' first. By then, you'll have so much love and admiration for the characters, the sequel will be that much better. If you haven't read them, you must. I promise, you'll walk away inspired. If you have, pass them on to your friends. I've already convinced two of my friends who are not readers to read 'Same Kind of Different As Me'. Stay tuned for comments on the Avid Readers Unite fan page. Remember, this month is National Reading Month. Share your love for reading!

Favorite quote: "Mr. Mike, everybody's lookin for God everywhere on the outside. He ain't in no book, and He ain't in no preacher and He ain't in nothin or no one on the outside. You got to go inside 'cause that's where God is--in the deepest place inside you". ~ Denver Moore

Saturday, March 6, 2010

National Reading Month

Did you know that March is National Reading Month? What a great time to share your love and passion for reading! Hope everyone had the opportunity to celebrate 'Read Across America Day' on March 2nd, the birthday of Dr. Seuss. Let's keep this going! Read new books this month or go back to old ones you love, but haven't read in a while. Read to your children everyday and share a good book with a friend.

Here's another challenge! We all have friends who, for whatever reason, do not read. Introduce them to the wonderful world of books!! I challenge you to entice at least one of these friends to read a book you've selected and post a comment on the Avid Readers Unite fan page, letting us know what they thought of it. Let's go, Avid Readers! WE LOVE BOOKS!!